10 US Cities With the Lowest Number of Homes for Sale

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It’s no secret that the homes-for-sale inventory has been low for months. If we tack on the affordability, the inventory available to first-time buyers has been even lower.

While this situation might be changing, there are some countervailing forces that buyers have to contend with. Rising mortgage interest rates raise the monthly mortgage payment. That, in turn, can reduce sales which then leads to fewer affordable new homes being built and fewer homeowners willing to sell and move up.

Researchers at Realtor.com noted that in the first six months of this year, the inventory listed on the firm’s website was 18.2% lower than in the same period in 2015. In January 2009, the number of homes on the market totaled 14.3 million; in January of 2018, that total was just 6.2 million.

Some U.S. cities are worse off than others. Realtor.com researchers looked at the number of homes on the market in 50 metro areas for the first six months of 2018 and the same period in 2015. Then they calculated the drop in square footage in each market by multiplying the drop in total homes in each metro area by the average square footage of homes in each area.

Here are the 10 cities where inventory levels are the lowest. Realtor.com limited the list to one city from any state.

  1. Sacramento, California
    Median list price: $453,000
    Decrease in inventory: -55.1%
    Drop in square footage for sale: 10.41 million
  2. Charlotte, North Carolina
    Median list price: $334,600
    Decrease in inventory: -52.2%
    Drop in square footage for sale: 17.26 million
  3. Indianapolis, Indiana
    Median list price: $260,000
    Decrease in inventory: -49.6%
    Drop in square footage for sale: 10.73 million
  4. Buffalo, New York
    Median list price: $190,000
    Decrease in inventory: -47.1%
    Drop in square footage for sale: 2.84 million
  5. Detroit, Michigan
    Median list price: $248,500
    Decrease in inventory: -46.4%
    Drop in square footage for sale: 16.3 million
  6. Minneapolis, Minnesota
    Median list price: $337,100
    Decrease in inventory: 41.3%
    Drop in square footage for sale: 12.69 million
  7. Milwaukee, Wisconsin
    Median list price: $250,000
    Decrease in inventory: -37.3%
    Drop in square footage for sale: 4.95 million
  8. Louisville, Kentucky
    Median list price: $249,500
    Decrease in inventory: -36.8%
    Drop in square footage for sale: 3.45 million
  9. Richmond, Virginia
    Median list price: $311,500
    Decrease in inventory: -36.8%
    Drop in square footage for sale: 4.19 million
  10. Seattle, Washington
    Median list price: $552,600
    Decrease in inventory: -35.1%
    Drop in square footage for sale: 4.69 million

For more details visit the Realtor.com website.